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Staff Salaries

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many of her Department's and agencies' full-time employees as at 1 June were employed on salaries (a) under £20,000, (b) between £20,001 and £40,000, (c) between £40,001 and £65,000, (d) between £65,001 and £115,000 and (e) over £115,000; in each group, what percentage were (i) female and (ii) from ethnic minorities; and if she will make a statement. [83647]

Ms Hewitt: The table lists the numbers of full-time staff in the DTI and its agencies on 1 June 2002 in the salary bands set out in the question. For each band it

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gives the percentage that are female and from ethnic minorities, except the highest where the numbers are small enough for individuals to be identified.

Percentage
Salary bandTotal staffFemaleEthnic minority
Under £20,0004,22456.615.9
£20,001 to £40,0003,37333.910.7
£40,001 to £65,00088518.23.7
£65,001 to £115,00013121.43.1
Over £115,0003
Total8,61643.212.4

I am committed to ensuring that the proportions at all levels properly reflect the proportion of women and ethnic minorities in the UK population and have prepared a strategy to identify actions to address this.

Thailand

Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what recent commitments her Department has made to help promote the development and export of poultry meat from Thailand. [81068]

Nigel Griffiths: The Department has made no commitment to help promote the development and export of poultry meat from Thailand.

Torness Power Station

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when the Torness power station will be generating electricity again. [85108]

Mr. Wilson: This is a matter for British Energy.

However, I understand from the company that both generating units at Torness are now in service.

US Steel Tariff

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will make a statement on the impact on British industry of the US steel tariff. [83918]

Ms Hewitt [holding answer 28 November 2002]: On 5 March 2001, President Bush announced the imposition of increased duties on imports of a wide range of steel products following a safeguard investigation under Section 201 of the US 1974 Trade Act. Based on 2001 figures, 46 per cent. of UK steel exports equivalent to around 215,000 tonnes were covered by the measures. This equates to approximately 2 per cent. of UK producers' total sales of steel industry products. Subsequently the US Authorities announced exclusions resulting in 70 per cent. of UK steel trade with the US being unaffected by the US safeguard action. The Government will continue to take close interest in the US response to further requests from UK companies for exclusions, and will intervene with the US Authorities if necessary.

Following the US decision, the EU took the precautionary measure of establishing its own safeguard action to protect against a surge of imports into the EU diverted from the US market. In addition, the EU, together with a number of other WTO members (including China, Japan, Korea, Norway and

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Switzerland) is challenging the US safeguard measures in the WTO. The Dispute Panel ruling is expected in March 2003.

Wind Farms

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what size onshore wind farm buffer zones are in relation to (a) roads, railways and canals and (b) airports. [84557]

Mr. Wilson: The information is as follows:

(a) There are no specific buffer zones for onshore wind farms in relation to roads, railways or canals. Each application is assessed on its merits.

Applicants are advised to consult, at an early stage, the Department of Transport for trunk roads and the local highway authority for all other publicly maintained highways.

The Strategic Rail Authority should be consulted in relation to construction works near railway lines.

Each planning application near a canal follows the usual planning procedures and would be decided on the merits of the development, with the British Waterways

Board available to provide advice to planning authorities. For applications near rivers, applicants will need to take account of the Water Resources Act 1991 and the Land Drainage bylaws 1981.

(b) Developments within a specified radius of major airports and aerodromes are subject to mandatory consultation with the Civil Aviation Authority or the Ministry of Defence under the Town and Country Planning (Safeguarded Aerodromes, Technical Sites and Military Explosives Storage Areas) Direction 2001. The radius around an airport, within which mandatory

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consultation is necessary, is detailed for that airport in their particular safeguarding map. The safeguarding map is issued to each local planning authority within the area affected as specified by the legend on the map.

For a proposed development within a radius of 2 km of an aerodrome, which is not safeguarded, the airport management should be consulted by the applicant about the development.

WTO Regime

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what steps she is taking to ensure the WTO regime allows countries to limit imports where there are genuine and demonstrable ethical objections to a product or its method of production on (a) environmental and (b) animal welfare grounds. [80850]

Ms Hewitt [holding answer 20 November 2002]: The UK has been working with our EU colleagues on these issues for a number of years, as trade is a matter of community competence. Environmental and animal welfare issues have long been included among the EU's WTO negotiating priorities. At Doha, the EU successfully secured negotiations in the current WTO round to clarify the relationship between the trade clauses in Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) and WTO law. In the negotiations we are pushing for a presumption of conformity between WTO rules and specific trade obligations in specific MEAs. This would cover trade measures in existing international MEAs on trade in endangered species, ozone-depleting substances, hazardous waste and chemicals. The Doha mandate also ensures that the issue of farm animal welfare will be taken into account as part of the current agreement on agriculture negotiations.

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INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Afghan Refugees

Julie Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the funding implications are of the agreement between UNHCR, the Iranian Government and the Afghan Interim Administration on resettling the 2.2 million Afghan refugees from Iran to Afghanistan; and what Britain's contribution to this funding is. [80717]

Clare Short [holding answer 18 November 2002]: On 3 April 2002, at the time of signing, the Tripartite agreement with the governments of Iran and Afghanistan, UNHCR estimated that some 1.5 million Afghan refugees were in Iran. In 2002, UNHCR allocated 6 million specifically for assistance to the Afghan refugees in Iran.

Following the signing of this agreement, 400,000 Afghan refugees have voluntarily returned to Afghanistan from Iran. UNHCR estimate a voluntary repatriation of a further 500,000 Afghan refugees from Iran in 2003. In 2003, The UNHCR appeal has earmarked US$198m specifically for Afghan Internally Displaced Persons and Afghan refugees returning from Iran, Pakistan and the five central Asian states.

Since September 2001, the UK has contributed over 5m to UNHCR for their programmes of assistance to Afghan refugees. Of our overall contribution to Afghanistan over 1m has been specifically designated for Afghan refugees in Iran. We are also supporting a number of other humanitarian programmes which will help to create an environment for the sustainable return of both refugees and Internally Displaced Persons.

Julie Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the level of funding to UNHCR for support to Afghan refugees in Iran has been in each of the last five years; and what the UK contribution has been. [80718]

Clare Short [holding answer 18 November 2002]: Since September 2001, the UK has contributed over £5million to UNHCR for their programmes of assistance to Afghan refugees. Of our overall contribution to Afghanistan over £1 million has been specifically designated for Afghan refugees in Iran. We are also supporting a number of other humanitarian programmes which will help create an environment for the sustainable return of both refugees and Internally Displaced Persons.

The level of UNHCR funding to Afghan refugees in Iran over the last five years 1998—2002 inclusive is as follows:

£
1998 9,556,733
1999 10,660,773
2000 9,238,962
2001 9,089,776
2002 14,736,383

The UK contribution as a whole to displaced persons within Afghanistan and Afghan refugees in Iran, Pakistan and the five central Asian states through UNHCR over the last five years 1998—2002 inclusive is as follows:


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£
1998 1,024,984
19990
2000997,437
20012,351,057
20025,003,203


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